One fatal crash. Two colliding worlds. Three wrecked lives.
School teacher Ben is driving on the motorway, on his usual commute to work.
A day like any other…
Except for one man who, in a final despairing act, jumps in front of Ben’s car, turning the teacher’s world upside down in a single horrifying instant…
Wracked with guilt and desperate to clear his conscience, he develops a friendship with Alice, the dead man’s wife, and her 7-year-old son Max.
But as he tries to escape the trauma of the wreckage, could he go too far in trying to make amends?
How would you cope, knowing you’d caused someone’s death?
Robin has created a plot that is straight out of your worst nightmare! Told via alternating chapters from the perspective of the two main protagonists Alice and Ben, we are taken on a journey into how the actions of Alice’s husband Adam, changes their lives forever. As I like to say in some of my reviews, less is more when discussing the plot, as I think the blurb gives the reader enough without going into any further detail. This is definitely the case for The Wreckage.
The characters in this story are very well developed, but I was not really able to connect with them. Having said that though, this did not hinder my enjoyment of the book and in some ways, I think they were supposed to get the reader to feel this way. Alice was the most interesting to me. Cold and detached and at times a downright you know what, she is the one that has the most growth throughout and as the story progresses the layers are peeled away and you understand why she is the way she is.
Ben, always had me feeling uneasy. I sympathised with him of course, but perhaps it was also the fact that I was questioning his intentions. Robin had me second guessing which way his character arc was going to go and it was his level of intensity and straightforwardness that made me most uncomfortable. With Adam, we don’t get a lot of insight into his character straight away. We know from bits and pieces from Alice’s perspective, that he was suffering and struggling with life, but it isn’t until we get his side of the story where everything then falls into place in a chilling account.
I enjoyed the ease of Robins writing, which was engaging, descriptive (though not overdone) and emotive. He gives a raw and honest insight into the sensitive issues of depression, mental illness and suicide and he handles these respectively and extremely well. I liked how he was able to get me comfortable into the story and keep my attention, but I do have to admit, that I was wondering where it was going to go and I was preparing myself for an ending that was not going to be satisfying. I am pleased though to report, I had nothing to worry about there…What a shocker!!
The Wreckage is a slow burn to start with, but as soon as Robin notched up the speed of it, this was when it really kicked into high gear and took off! With a clever twist interwoven that I did not see coming and a jaw-dropping ending that chills you to the bone, as a first-time novelist, Robin has done a great job with this book and I look forward to seeing what he comes up with next. It was a pleasure to be able to read and review The Wreckage which I recommend.
Thank you to NetGalley, Trapeze and Robin Morgan-Bentley for allowing me to read an advanced copy of The Wreckage which I have reviewed honestly and voluntarily.
This review will be added to, Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Amazon Australia & Amazon US. I will also add to NetGalley, Apple Books, Kobo, Google Play and Barnes & Noble if available. As I am from Australia, I am unable to add to Amazon UK, but will post to Waterstones & Foyles if also available.